After they stitched up my hands and arms and given me injections for tetanus and pain and whatever else, they bandaged up my hands and arms so that I could not really move my hands. The doctor admonished me for doing that much damage. The architect who had driven us then spoke up. He said it was like those stories of mothers lifting heavy vehicles to rescue their children. I had apparently moved pieces of the ruins that had seemed too heavy for several men. I guess at the time all I could think about was rescuing Anthea. He handed over my keys and phone and said he had organised a lift to collect his own car and would phone me in a few days to discuss our next meeting. Meanwhile he and the builder would have another look at the buildings the next day and plan what could be done.
I wanted to watch Anthea after she had been x-rayed and cleaned up. I had to ensure she was ok, but I think the pain injections and the aftermath of the adrenalin rush had taken their toll. I sat in the chair and fell asleep. I woke when she moved.
I asked if she was awake, and to my horror she burst into tears. I leapt up and just held her until she stopped sobbing. I’m sure it made her feel a lot better to let all the emotion out.
It felt so good to have her alive and safe in my arms. After she stopped sobbing we just sat there, holding on to each other. Then I asked if she was OK and she nodded. Then she snuggled against me again. I had no argument with that as a way of passing the time.
Eventually a nurse came in and asked Anthea if she was ready to eat something. Then she turned to me and said I had to eat as well. After checking Anthea for dehydration she removed the drip and shortly returned with a tray. Two bowls of soup and bread.
I realised I was very hungry, but my hands were so bandaged I couldn’t hold the spoon. Anthea made me come and sit on the bed again, and she fed us both from the same spoon. We giggled as though we were naughty children again.
When we had finished I asked her to get my phone out of my jacket pocket and phone her parents. They were so relieved. Then I asked her to phone the special number I had for the police contact and to hold the phone for me to talk. They too were most relieved that she had been found and that no crime had been committed.
Then the hospital manager came in and told us that somehow the press had photos of our arrival and how I looked doing Anthea’s admission paperwork and that there was some speculation in the news. He said he had arranged for a police presence outside Anthea’s room to ensure we would not have the press coming in. So far the pictures had only been taken in the more public areas of the hospital. Anthea and I decided when she could be released she would come back to the palace where at least we could provide a level of security and privacy.
With his help I phoned my head of security and arranged to be fetched the next day, with a change of clothes for both Anthea and I. Then we phoned her parents and told them Anthea would be coming to the palace.